It’s well established that Doc Rivers is a nice guy. But his praise of the Celtics defense tonight was downright effusive.
“I thought it was terrific,” Rivers said of his team holding the Bobcats to 59 points on 31 percent shooting. “What did you think? I thought it was great. I thought, obviously, very active early. Tons of deflections. We keep that number and it was extremely — as high as you can possibly probably get it at halftime. And I thought we carried it over, contested starts. Last two nights, I thought it has been absolutely wonderful.”
Said Paul Pierce, “We always stress hot hands, and when we’re able to get in the passing lanes, force turnovers, get out on a break– it makes things easier when your doing those things.”
Suffocating defense can make for a boring game, especially when only one team is playing it. Luckily for the home crowd, the Celtics didn’t turn up the intensity on offense until the second half.
“You know, honestly I wasn’t happy in the first half offensively,” said Rivers. “I thought the ball stuck all first half. I thought we lost a golden opportunity to get an early lead. I think we were up 10 at halftime and I honestly thought, because of the way our defense was playing, that our offense didn’t match it. And I thought in the second half our offense moved the ball and we got a lot better.”